Friday, February 23, 2024

Frankston honours impact of volunteers

Frankston City Council has celebrated its local community ‘heroes’ at the 2023 Impact Volunteer Awards.

Mayor Nathan Conroy, Councillor Sue Baker and Council Director Communities Angela Hughes joined special guests to honour our volunteers.

Speaking at the event, Mayor Conroy said volunteers were the heart and soul of Frankston City.

“We are privileged to have over 16,800 volunteers in Frankston City, who contribute more than 46,000 hours of their time each and every year to our community,” he said.

“It’s a remarkable contribution that is equal to $1.3 million worth of donated time annually … a contribution that I and Council applaud, recognise and deeply appreciate. The inspirational people we’re recognising are dedicated to supporting others in need over a
long period of time.”

The Leadership Award was won by Alastair Leaver, from Mum’s Supporting Families in
Need. A passionate volunteer, Alastair was instrumental in reinvigorating and growing the
organisation’s volunteer network – both during and following a period of volunteering
turmoil due to COVID.

The Service to Community Award was won by Nancy Martin from Ebdale Community Hub.
Nancy has been volunteering for two days per week for over 10 years at Ebdale Community
Hub.

The Youth Award was won by Zoe Tokalahi, from Frankston North Community Centre Playgroup.

The Initiative Award was won by Jaqui O’Leary, from 3198 Seaford Beach Patrol. Since becoming group manager in August 2018, Jaqui has run dozens of beach cleans,
coordinating 1299 volunteers to remove 1,249 kilograms of waste, including 3052 cans and
bottles, from our beaches.

The Teamwork Award was won by the Frankston North Community Centre Cafe. The cafe’s Community Lunch volunteers offer their skills and time in a busy environment to provide a low-cost three course meal and barista coffee to residents and community centre participants on a Wednesday.

The Outstanding Volunteer Organisation Award, including a $1000 prize, was won by
Mums Supporting Families in Need (MSFIN). In the 2021/22 financial year, MSFIN supported over 4,500 individuals. The free service provides families in crisis with
essential aid, which includes nursery essentials, clothing, footwear, linen, toiletries and
food. Since 2012, MSFIN has supported over 100,000 people.

“There are many groups and programs in the Frankston City community who rely on the time and skills of volunteers to do the vital work they do,” said Director Communities, Angela Hughes.

“From providing Meals on Wheels, to helping out with a local sporting club, and even in keeping our local beaches free from rubbish – we rely on the work of our volunteers to keep the City running.

“Congratulations and thanks to all the volunteer nominees, organisations and award
winners. On behalf of an incredibly grateful Council and community, thank you to each and
every volunteer who is making a positive impact in Frankston City!”

Ms Hughes also thanked the judging panel for the Volunteer Awards including Jackie Galloway OAM, Karin Hann and Shane Thomas.

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